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Cover for Shanghai Girl Gets All Dressed Up

Shanghai Girl Gets All Dressed Up

Beverley Jackson


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It was within the sensual, cinematic setting of 1930s Shanghai that traditional Chinese fashion changed forever. Call them cheongsam, qi pao, or Suzy Wong dresses—the high-collared, body-clinging, slit-to-the-thigh gowns evolved in a world of dramatic change, where Chinese citizens mingled with foreigners from such cosmopolitan cities as Tokyo, London, New York, and Moscow. In SHANGHAI GIRL GETS ALL DRESSED UP, Asian art-historian Beverley Jackson explores the city that fostered such radical cultural and social change and the daring and fashionable women—including actresses, courtesans, and showgirls—who wore these fabulous and revealing dresses. Twenty luminous photos of cheongsams and Chinese costumes from the author's collection, combined with spectacular archival photographs and art, chronicle the social life and history of a groundbreaking city and the beautiful fashions that were born within its walls. Part history and part fashionable frolic, SHANGHAI GIRL steps back in time and paints a vivid picture of a lost generation of intrigue, style, and beauty. Includes more than 100 new and vintage photographs of the city, the clothes, the Chinese cinema stars who led the trends, and the Hollywood movie queens who inspired them.Addresses the profound influence of Chinese costumes on Western fashion trends via film in the 1930s.

Ten Speed Press, 9781580083676, 160pp.

Publication Date: May 26, 2005

About the Author

BEVERLEY JACKSON is an esteemed art and cultural historian who specializes in Chinese art and costume. She tours and lectures on Asian art from her home in Santa Barbara, California.